The History of Stamp Collecting Part 25 – Alexander Baillieu

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Alexander Baillieu was born in 1842. His father was a well-known antiquarian in Paris, also selling reprints of rare books. Alexander had collected stamps from an early age. It was probably in 1861, when collecting became popular, that his father advised him to sell parts of his collection in the store. On the first day, he sold stamps worth 27 Francs.
His family was so impressed they all wanted to join the bandwagon. They sent 125 francs to each of 25 foreign embassies with the request to send stamps from each country for that value. All of the embassies complied with the request and they began trading stamps with a nice stock.

After a while, it became obvious that the stamp trade was not the gold mine they had hoped for and the family’s interest waned. The father returned to his books, his mother and sister also dropped out, and so Alexander remained alone with the stamps.

In 1863 he published a catalogue. Although his catalogue experienced some reprints and, among other things, he contributed to Lallier’s first album, he never received such a great reputation as his colleague dealers Pierre Mahé and Arthur Maury. Below is a picture of his second print. By clicking on the image you can view the content.

Baillieu passed away on June 30, 1899, aged 57.

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